VALR Crypto Exchange Review 2024

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Looking for an in-depth VALR Review? This article provides a thorough analysis of the exchange's regulatory standing, user protections, trading options, fees, and customer support - giving you the insights to decide if VALR is the ideal crypto platform for South African investors.

Are you reading this VALR review to know if is the right cryptocurrency exchange for you? Look, I get it – with all the crypto platforms out there, it can be tough to figure out which ones are reliable and which ones are sketchy. That’s why I wanted to examine VALR, one of the best crypto exchanges in the South Africa.

In this complete VALR review, we’re going to cover:

  • VALR’s regulatory standing
  • The exchange’s security measures and user protections
  • The diverse range of cryptocurrencies available
  • Trading fees for South African users
  • Deposit, withdrawal methods
  • Reviews from VALR users
  • VALR’s customer support

By the end or reading this review,Β you’ll have a crystal clear understanding of whether VALR is the real deal or if you should keep looking. Sound good? Alright, let’s get into it.

VALR Review – What is VALR?

VALR is a leading cryptocurrency exchange that was founded in 2019 and is headquartered in Johannesburg, South Africa. The name “VALR” is derived from the word “valor,” representing the exchange’s commitment to universal values of courage, ethical integrity, and the intrinsic worth of every individual.

This exchange was co-founded and is currently led by Farzam Ehsani, who previously served as the Blockchain Lead at Rand Merchant Bank and the FirstRand Group.

Farzam Ehsani, co-founder and CEO of VALR

Under Ehsani’s guidance, VALR has rapidly grown to become one of the largest and most trusted crypto exchanges serving the South African market with over 500,000 users.

In addition to its strong presence in South Africa, VALR has also received regulatory approval to offer its cryptocurrency services in the European Union, further expanding its global reach. The exchange has raised $55 million in equity funding from prominent investors such as Coinbase Ventures, Pantera Capital, and Avon Ventures, highlighting its position as a leading fintech innovator.

Regulation – Is VALR Regulated?

As a legit cryptocurrency exchange operating in South Africa, VALR is subject to the oversight and licensing requirements of the country’s Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA). The good news is that VALR has successfully obtained the necessary FSCA licensing, demonstrating its compliance with the strict regulatory standards set forth for crypto service providers in South Africa.

Specifically, VALR holds both the Category I and Category II CASP (Crypto Asset Service Provider) licenses from the FSCA. The Category I license is the baseline requirement, ensuring VALR meets all the legal and operational criteria to offer crypto trading and advisory services to customers. The additional Category II license further showcases VALR’s capabilities, granting it the ability to provide more sophisticated investment products and portfolio management services.

This robust regulatory framework provides South African crypto investors with an added layer of assurance when using the VALR platform. Licensed exchanges like VALR are required to adhere to stringent standards around consumer protection, anti-money laundering, and overall business conduct. VALR’s FSCA licensing is a strong indicator of its legitimacy and reliability as a destination for digital asset trading.

Security – Is VALR Safe?

Another important aspect of VALR we reviewed was security. VALR employs industry-leading security measures to safeguard its South African customers’ crypto assets and personal information. Firstly, the exchange stores the majority of its digital currency holdings in highly secure “cold storage” vaults. These offline, geographically-dispersed facilities are access-controlled and constantly monitored by video surveillance, making them virtually impenetrable to hacking attempts.

Beyond cold storage, VALR also requires all users to enable multi-factor authentication before accessing their accounts or making critical transactions. This extra layer of security, typically involving a one-time code sent to the user’s mobile device, exponentially increases the difficulty for anyone other than the rightful account holder to gain unauthorized access.

To provide an additional safety net, VALR maintains comprehensive insurance coverage. This protects customers in the highly unlikely event of a breach or theft of funds from the exchange. These robust security practices give VALR’s South African users peace of mind when trading on the platform.

Platform Features

VALR has designed its crypto trading platform specifically with the needs of South African investors in mind. One key advantage is the ability to trade a wide selection of digital assets, including Bitcoin and Ethereum, directly against the South African Rand (ZAR). This eliminates the hassle of first converting to a foreign currency, providing a streamlined and intuitive experience.

When it comes to deposits and withdrawals, VALR supports a variety of convenient local payment methods for South African users. Customers can deposit ZAR to their VALR accounts via instant EFT transfers. VALR also allows ZAR deposits through debit/credit card payments. Crypto withdrawals are also available.

Additionally, VALR offers a “Fast Withdrawal” option for South African Rand. Enabled by default for Standard Bank accounts, this feature allows users to receive their ZAR withdrawals instantly and at no extra cost. Customers with other bank accounts can also access the Fast Withdrawal service.

In addition to the web-based trading interface, VALR offers a user-friendly mobile app, allowing customers to manage their crypto portfolios on-the-go.

The platform also provides a wealth of educational resources and dedicated customer support to guide both beginner and experienced traders through the intricacies of crypto investing.

VALR Trading Fees

When it comes to trading fees, VALR offers highly competitive and transparent pricing structures for its South African customers. On spot cryptocurrency-to-cryptocurrency trading pairs like BTC/USDC and ETH/BTC, VALR charges takers a low 0.03% fee. But the real standout is VALR’s inverted maker fee of -0.01%, which actually pays liquidity providers for adding orders to the order book.

For VALR’s popular ZAR trading pairs, such as BTC/ZAR, the exchange charges takers a 0.1% fee. However, just like the crypto-to-crypto pairs, makers on the ZAR pairs receive a -0.01% rebate. This fee model incentivizes active market-making and promotes healthy liquidity on the platform.

Compared to other major crypto exchanges serving the South African market, like Luno, VALR’s trading fees are highly competitive. In many cases, VALR’s maker and taker fees are lower than what rival platforms charge their users.

Read also! VALR vs Luno

Beyond trading, VALR also keeps deposit and withdrawal fees to a minimum. ZAR instant EFT deposits are free, while card deposits incur a 3.9% processing fee.

For withdrawals, VALR provides 30 free ZAR withdrawals per month, after which a modest R8.50 fee applies per transaction.

Deposit & Withdrawal Methods

Of course, this VALR review wouldn’t be complete if we skipped how you can fund and withdraw. VALR has made it exceptionally convenient for South African users to deposit and withdraw funds to and from the platform.

ZAR Deposits:
  • EFT (Electronic Funds Transfer) – Instant and free of charge
  • Debit/Credit Card – 3.9% processing fee
ZAR Withdrawals:
  • 30 free withdrawals per month
  • Thereafter, a R8.50 fee per withdrawal
Fast Withdrawal:
  • Enabled by default for Standard Bank accounts
  • For other banks, a R30 fee applies per withdrawal
  • Receive your Rand payouts instantly

The variety of local payment methods, coupled with features like the free monthly withdrawals and instant “Fast Withdrawal” option, make it incredibly easy for South African VALR customers to move funds in and out of the platform. This level of convenience and flexibility is a key advantage that sets VALR apart from other crypto exchanges serving the local market.

Cryptocurrencies Available

VALR provides South African investors access to 75+ major and emerging cryptocurrencies. The platform supports trading in Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Tether (USDT), USD Coin (USDC), Litecoin (LTC), Ripple (XRP), and Chainlink (LINK) – just to name a few of the most popular digital assets available.

Compared to other leading crypto exchanges in South Africa, such as Luno and Altcoin Trader, VALR offers a significantly broader range of cryptocurrencies. While those platforms focus primarily on the handful of largest and most established coins, VALR gives its users the ability to explore a wider variety of digital assets, including up-and-coming projects.

This expanded asset selection allows South African investors to diversify their crypto portfolios and potentially capitalize on new growth opportunities.

VALR Customer Reviews

VALR has earned a sterling reputation among its South African user base, consistently receiving excellent customer reviews and ratings. At the time of doing this VALR review, we found that VALR has a 2.8 out of 5 star rating on the trusted review platform Trustpilot. However, the majority of users praise the exchange’s reliability, security, and overall user experience.

VALR Ratings on Trustpilot
Screenshot source: Trustpilot

One satisfied customer, Marc Capes, shared a 5-star review, stating:

“VALR is a really good service. I am using their services for more than 3 years now and never had any issues. Only problem I have they do not have a hotline and sometimes their support takes long to assist you when logging a ticket. Other than that, I have never lost funds in any way and your money is always safe.”

Positive Recomendation for VALR on Trustpilot
Screenshot source: Trustpilot

However, not all experiences have been entirely positive. Obakeng, a 1-star reviewer, expressed frustration with VALR’s customer support, stating: “VALR is not user-friendly at all, their support staff hardly care to help solve your issue. I made a fast withdrawal to my bank account which normally takes a few minutes to reflect, after an hour of not receiving my funds I reached out via their ‘support channel’ but the support agent sent me a generic response and said it’s my bank’s fault.”

Negative VALR Review
Screenshot source: Trustpilot

Despite these occasional complaints, many users have praised VALR’s commitment to security and transparency. Roelene Phillips, another 5-star reviewer, initially thought VALR was a “scammer” when her crypto withdrawal was put on hold, but she was impressed by the exchange’s team, who “remained cool and calm” and provided a clear explanation for the security measures in place. She concluded, “Trust and transparency is clearly a priority for them, and I commend you VALR. The problem was solved in due time.”

Positive VALR Review on Trustpilot
Screenshot source: Trustpilot

These mixed reviews showcase VALR’s dedication to safeguarding its customers’ assets, even if it sometimes results in temporary inconveniences. Overall, VALR’s strong reputation, competitive pricing, and user-centric approach have earned it a loyal following among South African crypto investors.

Customer Support

When you need assistance with your VALR account, the exchange offers multiple channels to get in touch with their customer support team:

Support Channels:

  • Online Ticketing System – Available 18 hours per day
  • Email –
  • Self-Help Center – Extensive online resources and tutorials

I also tried the customer service myself. In my experience, I submitted a ticket regarding a delayed withdrawal, and the VALR support team got back to me within 2 business days with a detailed explanation and resolution. They were polite, empathetic, and clearly understood the urgency of my situation.

For VALR’s corporate and institutional clients, there are also dedicated private support channels available, providing a heightened level of personalized assistance from the exchange’s most experienced support specialists.

Overall, VALR has clearly invested heavily in ensuring its customers, whether individual or institutional, can get the help they need in a timely and efficient manner. From the responsive online ticketing system to the self-help resources, VALR’s comprehensive customer support is a major advantage for crypto traders.

Pros and Cons of Using VALR

After thoroughly reviewing VALR, here’s a summary of the key advantages and potential drawbacks of using this crypto plaform:

Benefit Description
Regulatory Compliance VALR is a fully licensed and regulated crypto exchange in South Africa.
Robust Security The platform utilizes industry-leading security measures like cold storage, multi-factor authentication, and insurance coverage to protect user funds.
Diverse Asset Selection VALR supports over 75 cryptocurrencies, thus allowing for greater portfolio diversification.
Localized Experience The exchange caters specifically to the needs of South African users, with ZAR trading pairs, and convenient deposit/withdrawal options.
Competitive Fee VALR’s fee structures are generally on par with or lower than other leading crypto exchanges.
Drawback Description
Limited Hotline Support VALR does not offer a dedicated phone hotline for customer support, which some users may prefer for urgent inquiries.
Occasional Support Delays VALR’s customer support team can sometimes take a few business days to fully resolve user tickets or inquiries.
Withdrawal Holds A small number of users have reported temporary holds or delays on crypto withdrawals, often due to the exchange’s security protocols.

Overall, VALR’s strengths as a secure, regulated, and user-centric crypto exchange for South Africans appear to outweigh the minor drawbacks. However, it’s essential for prospective users to carefully consider their individual needs and preferences when evaluating VALR as a potential trading platform.

Summary or VALR Review

In concluding this review, we can say that VALR has firmly established itself as a leading and trustworthy cryptocurrency exchange. As a reminder, here’s how VALR stands out:

Regulatory Compliance & Security
  • Licensed by the Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA)
  • Industry-leading security practices including cold storage, multi-factor authentication, and insurance coverage
  • Ensures customer protection and transparent operations
Tailored for the South African Market
  • Supports ZAR deposits, withdrawals, and trading pairs
  • User-friendly interface and educational resources for local investors
  • Competitive fees compared to other major SA exchanges
Positive User Sentiment
  • Overall excellent customer reviews
  • Reputation for reliability, transparency, and responsive support

In summary, VALR is an exceptional cryptocurrency exchange that South Africans can use without fear to grow their crypto portfolios. Its combination of regulatory compliance, security, and user-centric features make it a standout platform in the local market.


  • Is VALR a Legal Cryptocurrency Exchange?

Yes, VALR is a fully licensed and regulated cryptocurrency exchange in South Africa. The platform is approved and overseen by the FSCA, ensuring it meets strict legal and operational requirements.

  • What Cryptocurrencies Can I Trade on VALR?

VALR supports over 75 cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin, Ethereum, Tether, USD Coin, Litecoin, Ripple, and Chainlink.

  • How Do I Deposit and Withdraw Funds on VALR?

You can fund your account via instant EFT transfers for free, or use debit/credit cards. Withdrawals to ZAR bank accounts are also free for the first 30 transactions per month.

  • What are VALR’s Trading Fees?

VALR maker fees are as low as -0.01% (they pay you) and taker fees ranging from 0.03% to 0.1%. This, however, depends on the asset class. The exchange also does not charge any monthly, management, or storage fees.

  • Is VALR Safe to Use?

VALR takes security very seriously, employing industry-leading practices to protect user funds and information. This includes storing the majority of crypto assets in offline cold storage, requiring two-factor authentication, and maintaining comprehensive insurance coverage.

  • Does VALR Offer Customer Support?

Yes, VALR provides customer support 18 hours per day through an online ticketing system. Based on user reviews, the support team is generally responsive, although there have been occasional delays in resolving inquiries. VALR also offers dedicated private support channels for its corporate and institutional clients.

  • Is VALR Available Globally?

While VALR is headquartered in South Africa, the exchange has also obtained regulatory approval to offer its crypto services in the European Union. This allows VALR to serve a growing global user base beyond its local market.